Stale Thoughts and Broken Links

Old entries from my weblog on geophysics and the energy industry.


WSJ: Oil's Slide Threatens Future Supply.

"Nobuo Tanaka, head of the International Energy Agency, the Paris-based watchdog, was one of several experts at the annual Oil and Money conference here predicting that the industry could be setting the stage for yet another supply-and-demand whiplash down the road.... The price of crude began its rally five years ago, when an oil industry that hadn't invested enough in new capacity during the years of low prices failed to cope with surging demand from the booming economies of China and India. That scenario could now play out all over again."

Reuters: PGS posts strong Q3, sees client spending risks.

"Norwegian oilfield services firm Petroleum Geo-Services ASA on Friday posted above-forecast third quarter profits and said it saw increasing uncertainty about spending on seismic surveys by oil and gas companies."

Reuters: Wavefield cuts 2008 sales view despite strong Q3.

"Norwegian seismic surveyor Wavefield Inseis reported a sharp rise in third quarter operating profit on Tuesday, in line with forecasts, but cut its 2008 revenue outlook due to weak multi-client sales."

PR Newswire: SeismicCity Improves Depth Perception With NVIDIA GPU Computing Technology.

"‘Last year, SeismicCity migrated its depth imaging system from a 1,000- core CPU based configuration to a configuration based on NVIDIA Tesla 1U systems,’ said Claude Pignol, vice president of technology at SeismicCity. ‘NVIDIA's advancements in GPU Computing are a major breakthrough. Transitioning to GPUs has given us a 10-20X performance boost, but more importantly, GPUs allow us to use computationally-intensive algorithms that we simply couldn't process with CPUs. This is a huge advancement which allows us to use RTM and other more accurate but data-intensive algorithms for larger datasets.’"

Energy Business Review: WesternGeco receives new land contract from Gazprom Libya.

"WesternGeco has announced that it has been awarded a land contract by Gazprom Libya for the acquisition and processing of 3,400sqkm of 3D seismic data over the Ghadames Basin in Libya. Gazprom has selected the WesternGeco Q-Land high-channel-count, integrated point-receiver acquisition and processing system to acquire the data."

PR Newswire: ION and Guide Announce Geophysical Alliance.

"ION Geophysical Corporation and Guide Geoscience Technologies (GGT), a Cairo-based seismic data processing company, announced the formation of an alliance to provide advanced imaging and reservoir-related services to oil & gas companies operating in North Africa."

Marketwire: VGS Seismic Canada Welcomes New Executives, Issues Stock Options.


WSJ: For Big Oil Firms, a Silver Lining. As Crude Price Falls, Political Issues Ease, Refining Margins Widen, Partners Relax.

"Competition for resources in the industry is easing as smaller firms cut capital spending programs and struggle to find funding. That should bring down the cost of oil-field services, such as shooting seismic images or leasing drilling rigs."

Houston Chronicle: Shell's technology chief has his eye on innovation.

"Jan van der Eijk, Royal Dutch Shell's chief technology officer, oversees the oil major's technology initiatives, such as use of seismic imaging to map out possible oil deposits beneath the sea floor...."

"Q: Both primary and enhanced efforts can recover a portion of the oil in a reservoir. Is it realistic to believe you can recover 100 percent?"

"It's very dependent on the reservoir. Every reservoir has its own characteristics. Today we see recovery from reservoirs is, on average, 35 percent but it varies a lot per field.... Depending on the oil price, I think we'll see that creeping up from 35 percent to maybe 45 percent."

Energy Current: BHP Billiton to start 4-D seismic in Stybarrow.

"BHP Billiton is set to begin a baseline 4-D seismic study "to resolve some uncertainties around the ... reservoir dynamics" at its deep-water Stybarrow oil project off Western Australia, according to The Australian newspaper."

Energy Current: One more seismic vessel for Nordic Maritime.

"Singapore-based Nordic Maritime expects to take delivery of a newly converted 2-D seisimic vessel towards the end of this year.The vessel is being converted from a fishing trawler named Pavlovsk at Cochin Shipyard in India."


Bloomberg: Schlumberger Profit Rises After Oil Climbs to Record.

"Schlumberger Ltd., the world's largest oilfield-services provider, said third-quarter net income climbed 13 percent after record crude prices spurred exploration and production spending by customers. The company's shares fell after it said growth may slow."

Motley Fool: Schlumberger Raises Caution Flag.

"With Schlumberger's shares having been cut in half just since July, it's likely that there are some values being created in the oil patch. But perhaps you've also heard the adage about catching a falling knife. Until it becomes apparent that that proverbial knife -- in the form of oil and gas prices -- has clanged to the ground, I'd be circumspect about grabbing any descending oilfield blades."


WSJ: Oil's Slide Deepens as Downturn Triggers Sharp Drop in Demand.

"The sharp drop in U.S. oil demand -- down in recent weeks by about 9% from a year ago -- shows how deep the economic malaise is across much of the industrialized world now.... U.S. benchmark crude on Thursday fell to less than half of its record high, set just three months ago, of $147 a barrel."

"Many analysts were predicting just weeks ago that oil would average around $105 a barrel next year.... So, while the price plunge is likely a reflection of the country in recession, if the price stabilizes at around $80 a barrel, as many now expect, ‘that will amount to essentially a $275 billion stimulus package to the U.S. economy,’ says Lawrence Goldstein, an analyst with the Energy Policy Research Foundation."

LA Times: Falling oil prices give consumers a break.

"‘OPEC will try to get prices to stabilize around $70, but $70 oil is still not cheap with global economies slowing and demand running this low,’ said Fadel Gheit, senior energy analyst for Oppenheimer & Co."

NYT: Oil Prices Slip Below $70 a Barrel.

"While consumers may have reason to cheer the falling oil prices after such a sharp run-up, the wild roller coaster of volatility is a nightmare for oil producers and petroleum executives who say they need more stability to plan long-term projects to develop new sources of oil."


Marketwire: CGX 3D Seismic Program Commences Offshore Guyana.

"CGX is undertaking a 536 square kilometre 3D program on its 100% held Corentyne PPL and the Company is participating with YPF Guyana Ltd., a subsidiary of Repsol YPF, in a 1,650 square kilometre 3D program on the adjoining Georgetown PPL, in which CGX holds a 25% interest. The 3D marine-seismic program is being undertaken by Fugro-GeoTeam utilizing their seismic vessel 'R/V GeoPacific'."

Press Release: Wavefield Inseis ASA Wavefield Inseis And Optoplan Awarded Contract For Permanent Seismic System.

"Wavefield Inseis ASA has been awarded a contract to supply an ocean bottom seismic sensor system for reservoir monitoring at the ConocoPhillips' operated Ekofisk field in the North Sea."


Subsea World: Wavefield Inseis awarded 3 year 3D seismic contract by ONGC.

"Commencing during the fourth quarter this year the contract is for a programme of 3D surveys offshore India to be acquired each season through to 2011. The total contract value is in excess of $170million."

Penn Energy: GXT awarded Nigeria seismic contract.

"The contract, the largest data processing award in ION's history, specifies that GXT and its longstanding Nigerian partner, Bulwark Services, will provide advanced imaging services for a series of 2C and 4C seabed seismic surveys that will be acquired over the next several years over producing fields offshore Nigeria."

Offshore Magazine: PGS acquires North Sea multi-client data.

"PGS has acquired over 5,000 sq km (1,931 sq mi) of multi-client data in the North Sea this year, mainly in Norway."

Reuters: PGS says fleet utilisation down to 81 pct in Q3.


Houston Chronicle: Half of Gulf oil, gas shut in as systems undergo Ike repairs.

"Three weeks after Hurricane Ike came ashore, nearly half of the Gulf of Mexico's oil and gas production remains shut in as pipelines and gas processing plants undergo repairs." ...

"The only significant deep-water damage reported so far was the loss of the derrick on the drilling rig atop BP's Mad Dog platform 190 miles south of New Orleans."

AP: Some still see brisk business for the oil services.

"As long as the price for a barrel of oil remains in the $80 range, oilfield service companies will have plenty of opportunities to thrive."

Thomson Financial News: Wavefield files $26.5 mln claim against TGS.

"The dispute over the companies' failed merger attempt is headed for arbitration, due to begin on Nov. 3, and Wavefield's claim followed a demand of up to $550 million from Wavefield a week ago."

Marketwatch: Geokinetics Inc. Announces Record Backlog and Impact of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.

"Geokinetics Inc. today announced that the Company's estimated backlog has increased to approximately $516 million as of August 31, 2008, a new record for the Company. Approximately $378 million or 73% of current backlog is related to international business (excluding Canada), with the remaining $138 million or 27% of current backlog related to North America ($130 million of this amount is attributed to the United States)."

Dawn: Polish firm's engineer kidnapped.

"Police said engineer Peter Stanczak had arrived at the field camp of a national seismic survey company of Poland, about 20km from its main camp office in the jurisdiction of Basal police station, early in the morning.

"Sources said three to four gunmen attacked the engineer's jeep and killed Frontier Constabulary guard Muhammad Saleem, driver Anayatullah and assistant driver Riaz. Later, they captured the engineer and escaped.

"Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack."

The River Reporter, Narrowsburg, NY: Roadblock for seismic testing thumper trucks?

"Along with possible damage, however, is another question being asked not only here, but in neighboring counties: who actually owns the right to the data gathered by the thumpers. The trucks not only get information from under the road or parcel on which they're located, but also from neighboring properties."

Energy Current: Polarcus buys additional seismic gear for its vessels.

"Polarcus is launching an initial fleet of six seismic vessels designed by Norway-based Ulstein Design AS, incorporating the Ulstein X-Bow hull."

Walter Kessinger

Walter's Work Archive Walter's Home Page